Dollhouse – Season One (2009/Fox Blu-ray)
B- Sound: B Extras: C+ Episodes: C+
I am no
fan of Buffy The Vampire Slayer and
it is easily the most overrated TV show of its time, second only to Friends. He knows his way around genres, but never
completely, which explains why Alien
Resurrection (1997) has its problems and Titan A.E. (the bomb from 2000) is a cult item at best. Of course, Firefly and Serenity
worked well enough, so he can pull off good work when he leaves when he is not overly
ambitious and that is where he gets into trouble with his new TV series, Dollhouse.
time, he thinks he is doing a hip update of The Stepford Wives (book and original film) with touches of Clonus (both reviewed elsewhere on this
site) for a young audience, all the way down to the theme song, but what does
it in is a bad combination of wooden acting, mindless melodrama that never
works, underdeveloped characters and total ignorance of the deepest
consequences of the material itself. By
doing the latter, Fox will not only fund it, but you can crate the myth that
you can “action fight” your way out of things that are not deal with that way
to being with.
Dushku is the lead and she can be appealing, but she is not at her best here,
no matter how good she looks. Tru Calling worked better. The issue of beauty in a world where
duplicates/gutted people (the same thing in many ways) are possibly being made
is also glossed over in an embarrassing way and this becomes very silly by the
time the first 13 hour-long shows are done.
The show could have been great, but it is an uneven mess and whether it
can recover by its second season remains to be seen. However, so much is wrong and bad about this
season (despite some ambitions) that “it was just a dream, it was a very bad
dream” won’t save this season permanent damage to the concepts working.
1.78 X 1 digital High Definition image is supposed to be shot in Super 35mm
film, but this is so subtly soft and noisy throughout that someone got crazy
with the digital internegative and ruined the quality too often. The DTS-HD 5.1 Master Audio (MA) is a little
better, but compressed and plays far too much towards the front channels. The result is not on par with the best such
show son TV today like Burn Notice
or The Beast. Extras include the unaired pilot Echo (they were having problems early
on), five featurettes, audio commentary on select shows and Deleted Scenes.
- Nicholas Sheffo